BEIRSDORF AG (BDF) is a leading cosmetic company with a great
reputation in its brand "NIVEA".
In 2009, BDF found that the two Defendants were engaged in the
manufacture and sale of goods bearing the infringing mark NIYEA. In
addition, Shanghai Yuyan, one of the two Defendants, had registered
a shadow company in Hong Kong named 'German Nivea (Hong Kong)
Co., Ltd' which applied to register several trade marks that
were similar to BDF's marks and marketed its products
aggressively, not only organising public events to advertise and
display the infringing products, but also building up several
branches in China to sell the infringing products in many cities.
It commissioned Arunis (shanghai) to produce a wide range of
infringing products (55 varieties) on a large scale. Considering
the potential impact on BDF's brand, BDF filed a Complaint with
the local AIC immediately; however, despite the large quantity of
goods seized by the local AIC, the AIC imposed only a very small
fine on Shanghai Yuyan and the company very soon resumed its
infringing activity. Beijing Lusheng Law Firm, representing BDF,
then initiated civil litigation against the two Defendants at the
Shanghai Second Intermediate People's Court.
The first-instance court issued a judgment on 21 January 2011,
finding infringement by the two Defendants and ordered them,
jointly and severally, to pay compensation amounting to RMB 500,000
(approx. US$80,000). The second instance court upheld the first
Judgement issued on 19 December 2011.
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